By Quayyum Raja
I am a very happy man today. Four years ago, I had published a book titled: “An Islamic Approach to Diplomacy & Human Rights.” In it, I described how the Prophet (PBUH) conducted diplomacy and defined Human Rights. I had concluded that the Islamic world was in crisis because it deviated from the basic idea of Islamic Justice and compromised its noble principles.
I recommended far-reaching steps for the Muslim states in general and the people, in particular, to get closer to each other. One such recommendation was the “Public Diplomacy” successfully practiced by the Islamic Republic of Iran. It meant people to people contact, which required relaxed visa rules to allow Muslims to visit each other and learn each other’s languages while adopting a common educational syllabus and their own language of instruction to promote Islamic culture and heritage.
I also pointed out that the Muslims would never get their issues resolved through an undemocratic international forum such the United Nations captured, controlled and run by the so-called five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, who granted themselves a power to veto any decision that may not suit their political hegemony and economic exploitation.
I had proposed that Turkey, Iran, Malaysia, Pakistan, Indonesia, and the Arab states could play a decisive role. Although I was optimistic, I didn’t think that one of the noblest Muslim leaders such as Dr. Mahathir Muhammad would hold an Islamic Summit, where he would be joined by outspoken leaders such as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, President Hassan Rouhani of Iran and Qatar’s Emir Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to identify the causes of conflicts in the Muslim world and their solution. The political and economic crisis in the Muslim World has been identified as one of the causes and coining the common Muslim currency as a solution.
It is unfortunate that Pakistan, Indonesia, and Saudi Arabia did not attend the Malaysia Summit, but if we compare how the European Union pioneers made a start, then the Malaysia Summit is certainly a success. We hope that not only Pakistan, Indonesia, and Saudi Arabia, but all Muslim states would sooner rather than later join the idea and make important contributions to this noble cause.
When the idea of EU was proposed by European Coal and Steel Industry in 1950, it was initially supported only by Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, France, and Luxemburg. These states were and are much smaller in size and number than those who attended the Malaysia Islamic Summit totaling 20 or so OIC members.
It has taken the European Union about 70 years to get 28 members. Some of them have still not been allowed to join Schengen with a single visa and joint currency, but the efforts continue with different categories of the member states.
In comparison, the Malaysia Islamic Summit has had a better start with 20 member states with bigger and historically more powerful Muslim countries with strong political personalities. Malaysia, Turkey, Iran, and Qatar deserve congratulations and praise for such a praiseworthy initiative.
However, what they need is patience, persistence, constant co-ordination and committed and experienced experts and researchers to work on this noble cause. The pioneers of the joint Muslim Currency and peace and stability in the Muslim World should locate committed experts from each Muslim country and community to work together to bring about understanding between the Muslims and a sense of justice and accountability in the system of government.
If they are able to do this, I am sure; the Muslim World would acquire much earlier what the EU has achieved in 70 years. I just hope and pray for wisdom, peace, and stability in the Muslim World. I hope the Muslims would have one day their own League of Muslims and International Court of Justice to settle their disputes and no Muslim will need to escape to Europe for Life, Liberty and Security.
Original Headline: A noble idea by Malaysia Islamic Summit
Source: MEHR News Agency